After both projects received preliminary approval from FERC over a month ago, the ongoing race to Florida accross the Gulf of Mexico between Coastal Corp.’s Gulfstream Natural Gas System and Williams and Duke Energy’s Buccaneer pipeline is heating up again (see Daily GPI, April 26). Gulfstream yesterday announced it signed a multi-million dollar deal with the Manatee County Port Authority for a permanent right-of-way easement to cross through Port Manatee

Gulfstream initially will pay $1.48 million for the landfall to Florida which will include the use of port services and acreage. On choosing Port Manatee for a landfall, the company said that the project will have minimal impact to Florida’s coastline and environment. According to the agreement, Gulfstream also plans on leasing upwards of 190 acres of land in Port Manatee to use as a staging construction site. The leased acreage will be used as a logistics base for the project.

The proposed $1.7 billion Gulfstream project would deliver 1.1 Bcf/d of gas to customers in central and eastern Florida through 744 miles of pipe extending from Mobile Bay offshore Alabama. Pipeline officials say they have firm transportation agreements with 10 large, non-affiliated Florida utilities and power generators.

“I think this is a major step forward,” said Coastal’s Joe Martucci. “Gulfstream has a superior route and strong market commitments. The key thing is, everything remains on schedule for our June 2002 in-service date,” he added.

©Copyright 2000 Intelligence Press Inc. All rights reserved.The preceding news report may not be republished or redistributed, in wholeor in part, in any form, without prior written consent of Intelligence Press,Inc.